The Collection of Medals to Welsh Regiments formed by the Late Llewellyn Lord

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Date of Auction: 27th September 2016

Sold for £2,200

Estimate: £2,600 - £3,000

The Crimea medal to Captain Francis Edward Evans, 23rd Foot, killed in action at the battle of the Alma

1854-56, 1 clasp, Alma (Capt. Francis E. Evans. 23rd Regt.) officially impressed naming, light scratching over rank and in reverse fields, a little polished, otherwise good very fine £2600-3000


Francis Edward Evans was born at Dean House, Oxfordshire, on 15 October 1821, son of Thomas Browne Evans, of Tuddenham, Suffolk and Dean of Oxford, by Charlotte, his wife, the daughter of Sir John Simeon, Bart. Commissioned Ensign in the 97th Foot on 5 April 1839, he exchanged to the Royal Welsh Fusiliers on 31 December 1839. He was promoted to Lieutenant on 15 April 1842, and to Captain on 11 November 1845. He served overseas in the West Indies and in Nova Scotia where, in 1847, he was involved in an affair with Captain Harvey, the son of the Governor. Happily no duel was fought and it is recorded that this was possibly the first case of a settlement of an affair of honour according to the Duke of Wellington’s system.

He was killed in action at the battle of the Alma, 20 September 1854. Major Lysons wrote to his father saying ‘he fell struck by a cannon ball on the head close to the Russian battery at the moment the enemy were giving way’.

A fellow officer, who had become well acquainted with him during the army exercises at Chobham Common in the summer of 1853, wrote: ‘Captain Evans was with the glorious light division. He led a company of the 23rd Welsh Fusiliers up the heights of Alma to the Russian batteries. A storm of balls, grape, canister, shell and bullets burst forth upon the leaders of the advance. Dozens of Her Majesty’s officers fell under the discharge, and among them was Captain Evans, who commanded the enemy at Chobham camp [Army exercises, summer 1853]. The Queen has lost no braver officer than Captain Francis Edward Evans, of the 23rd. He was a soldier of great judgement; he was a gentleman of fine parts. He had the soul of a lion against the enemies to Her Majesty’s crown and dignity. Boldness for the foe, but for all others nothing harsher than kindliness and love. For his country he had a strong arm to strike; he struck for her at Alma. In his death the army has to deplore the loss of ten men, and he who pays this humble tribute to his memory, one whom to know was to esteem.’

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